Wednesday, April 25, 2007

How businesses are using Web 2.0?

I came across a recent report from the McKinsey stables called 'How businesses are using Web 2.0'. I guess the point that McKinsey comes out with a report on the topic Web 2.0 is worth giving it a read. There are some findings on the report that I found very interesting like;

- three-fourths of executives who responded to the survey say they plan to maintain or increase their investments in technology trends that encourage user collaboration, such as peer-tp-peer networking, social networks and Web services.

- Another interesting finding is that many executives in emerging markets such as India and Latin America intend to move more quickly to capture the perceived benefits of these technologies

- Also with respect to technology investments the companies that acted quickly in the previous wave of investment are more satisfies than late movers. Of those who rate themselves are very satisfied, 46 percent are 'early adopters' and 44 percent 'fast followers'

- A survey result that I personally got excited on seeing was the response to question 'Is your company investing in any of the following Web 2.0 technologies or tools'. 80% said they were using or planning to use Web Services. This was followed by 48% for Collective Intelligence and 47% for Peer-to-peer networking. Social networking (37%), RSS (35%) and rest followed. The interest in the executives surveyed for investments in Web services, Collective intelligence, Peer-to-peer networking will be something that us knowledge managers will be closely watching.

I am aware of many organizations looking at Web 2.0 as the next phase of development in their pursuit to increase knowledge sharing. The survey in a way is a stamp by the business community accepting that Web 2.0 does seems to have a promise of actually providing them with a quantifiable benefit than just a internet fad that would fade away with time. Well of course how much we have learned from internet bubble is debatable.

One more thing that I can see happening in the near future is Web 2.0 becoming a more integral part of the future enterprise systems both CRM from a customer side, SCM from a supplier and partner side and ERP from a internal collaboration perspective. The day is not far when Web 2.0 will more from something good to have to something critical for organizations day to day functioning.

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Sunday, April 22, 2007

Quintura - Search & Find couldn’t get any more interesting?!

How can anyone not write about this search engine? It's user experience really stands apart if you ask me personally. Nope I am not starting any Google bashing session here. To tell you the truth, I still use Google the most. But then something inside all of us always wants to test out the new search engine out there. Well it is this urge that led me to this russian aritifical intelligence based search engine Quintura. What I find interesting about Quintura is it's visual representation of search results. Searching hasn't been so much fun before. Quintura basically displays your search results in two ways. On the left side you see a visual cloud with your search keyword in the middle surrounded by other terms related to your keyword in the some way or the other. And on the right you will see the search results as any other search engine gives us. Now for the stuff that really stands out. To describe that better I would like to do a search on the Quintura and show you.

For example, on typing 'Knowledge Management' on the visual cloud you will various words like information, strategies, portal, technology, knowledge, management etc as separate terms but one has an option to cancel a term from this cloud and this ensures the search results also change accordingly. I can also add a term in this cloud by double clicking anywhere on the cloud and typing in what I want and see the cloud and search results change accordingly. Does this sound cool or what? Also one can narrow down the results by cancelling out terms which one feels is not important for the information he is seeking.

On the whole it is a great search engine, both when an information seeker is looking for exhaustive and specific information. When exhaustive, one can look at all the related terms on cloud and when specific cancel out not so related terms to narrow down your search.

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